Look the part
It might seem obvious, but the importance of first impressions and appearances can’t be understated, in fact around 62% of employers in a 2014 poll considered a candidates dress sense to have a huge impact on their employability.
Whilst a candidate should always be judged based on their experience and qualifications, it’s an unavoidable fact that looking smart and being appropriately dressed will always play a major role in bagging that dream job. There’s no need to splash out on a new suit, but formal attire will always get serious plus points from any potential employers.
Interview situations are never easy. The butterflies in the stomach, the sweaty palms and the restlessness are all part of the big day, but that’s to be expected, ad can’t really be tamed. But one thing that can, and should be controlled, is the eyes. Eye contact is crucial.
And whilst we aren’t saying you should stare into the eyes of the interviewer (that would be pretty unnerving for them!) but having a healthy level of maintaining eye contact is important. It shows you’re paying attention, conscious of what’s being asked and crucially, that you are serious about the job.
It’s not something that we often do when speaking with someone, but eye contact can help establish a sense of trust and confidence with your potential employer. And if you’re against other candidates who are just as qualified and experienced, this could be the deal breaker.
Do your research
Whilst it certainly isn’t necessary to write a 10,000 word essay on the company you’re trying to work for, doing a small bit of research on who they are and their history can certainly work in your favour.
Knowing the name of who will be carrying out the interview is a great first step, but if you can’t find out beforehand don’t panic, introducing yourself when you meet them will usually always be met with their name in return.
Finding out some basic facts about the business, like when it was founded or whereabouts it operates in the UK, can show your potential employers that you have a keen interest not just in the job opening but also their company as a whole.
You shouldn’t overwhelm the interviewer with facts, but a basic knowledge of who you want to work for shows not only eagerness, but also a level of respect which many interviewees can easily overlook.
Be on time
It goes without saying that time truly is of the essence when it comes to job interviews. Turning up late not only causes issues for your potential employer (they may have other candidates due in later), but it also reflects very poorly on your ability to turn up to work on time.
Punctuality is one of the most important aspects of a job interview, but life can sometimes get in they way of turning up on time. Traffic, home life, transport, weather and many other things can make it difficult to get to anywhere on time, even if you leave plenty of time to commute.
If you know you’re going to be late, call ahead and let your interviewer know and explain why. Whilst it’s never ideal to turn up late, making them aware can show your ability to deal with situations and be proactive. Plus, it shows respect towards the interviewer and their business, and an appreciation for how valuable their time is.
Believe in yourself
It can be hard not to be nervous before and during an interview, after all they’re the last step towards landing the job. But having a sense of self belief can do far more than simply calm your nerves.
Believing in yourself naturally leads to a boost in confidence, which effects you not only mentally but physically. Your body language changes completely when you’re confident, meaning your potential employers will almost certainly notice the positive way you behave during your interview.
It can sometimes be hard to motivate ourselves and think positively when going into an interview, but if we can, even if it’s only for a short while during the interview itself, it can make a world of difference.